LVMH and eBay settle litigation over fake goods

PARIS Thu Jul 17, 2014 1:25pm EDT

An eBay sign is seen at an office building in San Jose, California May 28, 2014. REUTERS/Beck Diefenbach

An eBay sign is seen at an office building in San Jose, California May 28, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Beck Diefenbach

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PARIS (Reuters) - LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton and eBay Inc have settled a long-running court battle over the sale of counterfeit luxury goods on the U.S. company's online auction website.

The companies are implementing cooperative measures aimed at protecting intellectual property rights and fighting the online sale of counterfeit goods.

"Thanks to our joint efforts, consumers will enjoy a safer digital environment globally," the companies said in a joint statement, without giving detail on the measures.

A host of perfume and cosmetic brands under the LVMH umbrella, including Christian Dior, Givenchy and Guerlain, sued the world's leading online auctioneer in 2008, accusing the site of allowing trade in counterfeit goods. LVMH also claimed that the sale of real perfumes through non-approved distribution channels such as eBay hurt its business.

In 2008 a French court ordered eBay to pay LVMH 38.5 million euros ($52.1 million). A subsequent appeal court reduced the sum to 5.7 million euros but affirmed that eBay had been in the wrong.

In 2012 a French appeal court ruled that a lower court did not have jurisdiction over eBay's U.S. website but upheld the ruling as applied to its French and British sites.

LVMH shares were down 0.6 percent at 139.15 euros on Thursday morning.

($1 = 0.7391 Euros)

(This story was refiled to fix typo in spelling of Guerlain)

(Reporting by Martinne Geller in Paris; Editing by David Goodman)

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